UNION COUNTY — Opening Day for Dixie Youth Baseball this Saturday will be extra special with the introduction of this year’s teams, the induction of past players into its Hall of Fame, and the honoring of its state championship and world series-winning teams of the past.
Dixie Youth Baseball President Tommy Ford said Tuesday that this year’s Opening Day will be held Saturday at 11 a.m. at the Timken Sports Complex. As in years past, Ford said all this year’s teams will be brought down onto the field to be introduced and help kick off the season. In addition, any and all local dignitaries present will be invited onto the field to speak about the new season and the new teams.
Hall Of Fame
In 2011, Ford established the Union County Dixie Youth Baseball Hall of Fame to honor outstanding members of past Dixie Youth teams. Each year new members are inducted during the Opening Day ceremonies and Ford said this Saturday the following former players will be inducted into the Hall of Fame:
• “Little” Bill Wingo
• Mike Anthony
• Tommy Simmons
• Mike “Brokearm” Cohen
• Mike Cheek
• Gene Crist
A new addition to this year’s Opening Day Ceremony will be the honoring of past championship teams. Ford said the following teams will be honored Saturday:
• 1982 Dixie Youth State Champions
• 1984 Dixie Boys State Champions
• 1985 Dixie Boys State Champions
• 1996 Dixie Boys State Champions
• 1999 Dixie Pre-Majors State Champions
• 2007 Dixie Boys World Series Champions
• 2014 Dixie 7 & 8 Machine Pitch State Champions
Ford said he and the other coaches of those teams along with the board members of Dixie Youth are working to contact as many former players of those teams as possible to invite them to attend Saturday’s ceremony and stand with their former teammates as they are honored for their achievements. He urged any and all former members of those teams to attend the ceremony so they, like their fellow teammates, can receive the honor they are due.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.